As Head of the RSPB's Centre for Conservation Science, I lead the RSPB's science programme in the UK and overseas.
My overall role is to set the strategic direction for the RSPB's science, making it relevant to the society's needs thus ensuring its conservation policies and practices are underpinned by scientific evidence. My job is to provide a clear strategic steer, while at the same time creating the environment necessary to allow individual staff and teams to flourish in order to implement high quality, applied conservation science.
I undertook my PhD in the Zoology Department of Cambridge University and was a post-doctoral research fellow at the Station Biologique de la Tour du Valat in the Camargue, whilst also an academic visitor to the Edward Grey Institute, University of Oxford. I subsequently worked for the British Trust for Ornithology for seven years before joining the RSPB in 1994.
I spend only a small amount of time on personal science. In recent years, this has included: the impacts of neonicotinoid insecticides on wildlife, the impacts of GM crops on birds, the global spread of H5N1 avian influenza, annual horizon scans of global conservation issues, the impacts of volcanic activity on the globally threatened Montserrat oriole and case studies of the recovery of farmland wildlife.
- 2016 to present: Chair of Council of the Cambridge Conservation Initiative (CCI)
- 2015 to present: Chair of Bat Conservation Trust
- 2011 to present: Member of IUCN taskforce on systemic pesticides
- 1998-2004: Chair of the European Birds Census Council
Partners and Collaboration
- Prof William Sutherland, University of Cambridge
- Prof Jules Pretty, University of Essex
- Prof Dave Goulson, University of Sussex
- Dr Jeroen Van der Sluijs, Utrecht University